Saturday, June 30, 2007

En liten lista igen!

Här är en ny lista, det var ju ett litet tag sedan. Kopiera gärna!

1. Vad tänkte du när du såg dig själv i spegeln första gången i morse? Kommer inte ihåg.

2. Hur mycket kontanter har du på dig? Inga alls, brukar bara vara ett par korvören om jag ör på stan, jag använder mest mitt betalkort.

3. Vilket ord rimmar på "test"? Fest.

4. Favoritplanet? Jorden.

5. Vem ligger fyra på missade samtal-listan på din mobil? Unknown och ett numer jag inte känner igen. Brukar inte svara på dessa sorter eftersom jag ger ut mitt mobilnummer till ytterst få…

6. Vilken är din favoritringsignal på din mobil? Använder bara en, Sitting on the dock of the bay med Otis redding.

7. Vad har du på dig på överkroppen just nu? Ett vit gammalt linne.

8. Sätter du etiketter på dig själv? Nej.

9. Vad är det för märke på skorna du har på dig? Jag är barfota just nu, hade ett par GAP flipflops innan.

10. Ett ljust eller mörkt rum? Ljust, men gillar mer mörkt vid sovdags.

11. Vad gjorde du vid midnatt? Kollade på TV.

12. Vad står det i ditt senast mottagna SMS? "Ingen bebis" - jag hade frågat min kompis i Sverige om hon hade fått sitt barn ännu, hon är typ 1,5 veckor över tiden!

13. Var ligger ditt närmaste Seven Eleven? Inte långt härifrån, typ nästan tvärs över gatan som går utanför vårt kvarter.

14. Vilket uttryck använder du mest? "I love you!" skulle jag nog gissa.

15. Till vem sa du "jag älskar dig" senast? Min hund Bob.

16. Vilken pälsbeklädda sak rörde du senast? Det var Bob det med!

17. Hur många olika sorters droger har du nyttjat de senaste tre dagarna? Har kämpat med halsfluss och bihåleinflammation, så hostmedicin med kodein i ett. Annars bara mediciner som Prednisone, Synthroid och antibiotika.

18. Hur många rullar film ligger och väntar på att bli framkallade? Det är längesedan, I am all digital, baby!

19. Vilken ålder har varit bäst hittills? Känns bra med 33, alla stadier har ju bra och mindre bra perioder.

20. Din värsta fiende? Min dåliga hälsa.

21. Vad har du för skrivbordsbild på datorn just nu? Min dotter.

22. Vad var det senaste du sa till någon? "Are you all done" innan jag tog dotterns middagstallrik.

23. En miljon dollar eller förmågan att flyga? Pengarna tack!

24. Gillar du någon särskild lite extra mycket just nu? Mig själv, kanske, fast kroppen inte funkar som den ska…

25. Senaste låten du lyssnade på? I bilen, nån gammal goding... kommer inte ihåg vilken!

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Passport problem

K and I have our passports ready to go; he a US one and I a Swedish one.

S got her Swedish one early this year, and we applied for her US passport On April 13. We were told they were swamped with applications, and it could take 11 weeks.

Now recently it has been bumped to 12 weeks. Nevertheless, April 13 is 11 weeks ago; no passport!

I went online to get a passport application status; it is being processed. They know our travel date is July 6...

Finally today I was able to get someone on the phone at the state department. He was as helpful as he could be, he put a notice on our application that we are traveling within a week, and to process ASAP and overnight it to us. He also recommended calling back on Monday to put a 48-hour notice on the application, further pushing for a fast processing.

I sure hope she gets her passport in time... In worst case scenario she will have to travel as a Swedish citizen. I am not sure how difficult that will be when we come back into the US.
  • She is traveling with both her parents, one a US citizen and the other a legal resident;
  • She has a Swedish passport stating she was born in Florida;
  • She has her birth certificate that states she was born in Florida with a US citizen as a parent;
  • She has a receipt for the passport application;
  • She has a passport application status report from the US State Department.
I sure hope they won't give us any trouble coming back. Anyone have any advise?

Wednesday, June 27, 2007


I can already feel that the antibiotics have done good; the sinuses and the throat are not hurting as bad now. I was on the phone with my doctor (I am very blessed to have a close relationship with my doctor for the past 9 years, a definite plus when you are sick as much as I am!)

I guess I was coughing a lot, because a few hours later I got an automated call from my pharmacy that my prescription was ready for pick up. I was like: Huh? So I went online and saw that he had called in a prescription for heavy duty cough syrup, the kind you get a little loopy from (it has codeine in it). I sure will thank him tonight when I can sleep without almost breaking my ribs coughing up a storm!

I have said this before, but again: I seem to work better if I am really sick! I did 5 loads of laundry and 5.5 work projects! And I could almost not muster enough energy to walk!


Turns out I have strep throat, a sinus infection, an ear infection and possible the beginning of pneumonia! Sucks! The good thing is I started antibiotics yesterday, so hopefully I will feel better soon. I could barely sleep last night, it felt like a cheese grater in my throat and a vise over my sinuses... Coupled with my already wonderful diarrhea! I am just so happy this is happening now and not next week when we are going to Sweden...

I wish I could just sleep all day, but I have one more project to do and lots of laundry... Plus the daughter doesn't think it is a good idea if mommy is in bed all day... Sucks...

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


I have been battling a sore throat for a few days, but yesterday it got really bad... It might be strep throat (halsfluss), so I am waiting for my doctor to call me back to see if they can squeeze me in today. Since I am on two medications that suppress the immune system I can get really sick if I don't get treatment. It could also be just a virus, but I don't know yet. I also got a fever, headache, stuffy nose and general feeling of being sick. S is still coughing up a storm, it is difficult to get any sleep between myself being sick and her coughing so much!

At least there is enough time until next Friday to recuperate well enough so the trip to Sweden won't be too intolerable.

I was up real early to finish some work, so depending on what Dr B finds out I will try to sleep a little this afternoon, until it is time to pick up S from school...

Monday, June 25, 2007

Relaxed weekend

S and I started Saturday off by going shopping at a huge mall. We had luck, and all the stores we needed to visit had huge sales! I almost regret not getting more...

I am waiting for my friend A to have her second baby any day now. She was due on the 21st, but the baby has decided he/she is not ready to come out yet... This is the last gift I have to buy before the trip, but I don't know if it is a boy or girl yet! And since the mom to be really is hoping for girl and lots of pink, I want to wait and see and indulge her wish if it is a girl! I did get a few neutral things, but I know she is hoping for cute little dresses... She better have that baby soon ;-)!

Late Saturday afternoon all three of us went to the pool. It was in the shade by then, and the water was a lot warmer than the air (how that is possible when it is 90 degrees + outside!).

Sunday we spent a few hours on the beach. I had forgotten what an awesome thing it is to just float in the turquoise waters with all the glittering white sand underneath you. The water was warm and inviting to say the least!

We ended the day by having a BBQ; chili and lime marinated pork tenderloin with Swedish potato casserole (potatisgratäng) and a cool, crisp salad. Freshly baked brownies for dessert.

I am fighting S's cold, I have had a sore throat for days now. Hopefully that is it, she is still coughing up a storm, and she had a little eye redness coming back yesterday. Between steroids and Remicade, my immune system is compromised right now, it even says on the medication to "stay away from potentially contagious persons". But so far so good. Stomach wise I am worse off than in a long time...

After lunch S and I are planning to go to the pool. I have to wait until after lunch, because once we are there it is very difficult to get her to leave, so we better eat first!

I read in the Swedish daily newspaper Svenska Dagbladet that a heat wave that has plagued Europe is slowly on its way to Sweden Fortunately it won't be as hot as in other parts of Europe thanks to the Baltic Sea, but after some needed precipitation the next few days, the hot weather is expected next week. But compared to what we have in Florida it will feel cool!

Friday, June 22, 2007


This kid of mine is going to develop gills soon - we spent 3.5 hours at the pool - make that in the pool! When she was 2 she was completely fearless and would throw herself in the ocean, which made it very difficult to actual enjoy a day on the beach. When she was 3 she wouldn't even go near the water, and this year she started out very hesitant. She never ventured past the steps to the water where she can't reach the bottom, even though she is wearing enough flotation devices to prevent even the Titanic from sinking...

Today we finally had a breakthrough! Last time at the pool I took her against her will into the middle of the pool. She clung to me like a barnacle, even though I wouldn't have been able to sink her even if I wanted to... Today I did the same, but she was very relaxed and just causally rode my back when I swam. Then I was floating on an inflatable mattress, and she decided to tag along, floating at the side. Mind you, she is still wearing her arm floaties and a float ring around her waist... When we got to the deep end she let go of everything for a moment. Then did it again. She quickly realized that she wasn't going to sink to the bottom like a stone. In a few minutes she went from that to swimming all over the pool!

I am so happy for her, she really took a big step today, very brave!

Tomorrow she and I are going to a large mall for some gift shopping. I also need to stock up on my favourite dry skin remedy, Body Shop's Coconut Body Butter. My skin is really dry from being at the pool several times a week.
They also have a large indoor playground that S likes to visit. Then we might go to the pool again, but with daddy in tow (he hasn't made it to the pool yet this year).

On Sunday the plan is to get to the beach.

Take care!

Thursday, June 21, 2007


The last two weeks I have done the same amount of work I normally do in a month. I am beat! I just want to have some incoming money in the pipeline when we go on vacation, it is not like I get a paid vacation or anything!

I did my second Remicade infusion today, everything went without a glitch. The next one will be on July 24, after we get back from Sweden.

My colon is doing really bad today, it has been hard to get any sleep, and I don't like the amount of bleeding I have seen. But, there is nothing I can do about it right now, so I will just have to take it day by day and hope the Remicade actually will work... but I really don't have much hope for it...

k is mowing the yard, he has been so busy (still is) so the grass is way too tall... After that we are going to eat some yummy Thai food that he brought home to his harried overworked poor wife who is starving ;-)!

K has decided to fire the very nice woman he has had for 6 months. 6 months is the key here, that is how much time she has had to get with the program, but she still messes up all the details ALL the time... He hired her to take a load off of himself, but he ends up redoing most of her work anyway... It just goes to tell you people can look great on paper but be a dud in real life. He was ready to hire a second person anyway, so he put an ad in for receptionist/bookkeeper and a CPA. He doubts he will find a CPA, the job market is really tight here. But all he can do is offer a good compensation package (free, 100 % paid health care is hard to find these days!) So far a lot of resumes, but only one potentially promising candidate... We will make a decision after we come home from Sweden.

I need to veg out on the couch now, so over and out!

Second Remicade treatment

In a few minutes I am off for my second Remicade infusion. Too bad it takes 3 hours, I have so much work to do today!

I talked to my gastroenterologist the other day, and he said I need to do at least 4 treatments before we can say it isn't working... So far nothing but more stomach problems. He carefully pointed out that if it didn't work, "we have to look at other treatment options". That was a very slick way of him saying: SURGERY. That is my last option...

You can technically cure Ulcerative Colitis with surgery. IF the surgery is successful, which you of course won't know until about 6 months after. The modern UC surgery is called Ileal-Anal Pouch Anastomosis. They remove the entire colon and rectum, make a little pouch out of the small intestine, attach that to your anus. Then you have to have a temporary stomach bag for going to the bathroom for about 6 months so the internal pouch can heal. After that you will go to the bathroom normally. Usually most people will still have at least 7 bowel movements a day since there is no colon to absorb all the water from the food, therefore it will be more watery. But no pain and suffering... 95 % usually have success, the others end up with a permanent external bag for the rest of their life, after going to the long grueling (7 hours +) surgery with a long recovery...

So lets just hope Remicade is it for me! :-)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


A lot of times when I work on a translation project I can get really interested in the text. Like today, I have translated three manuals for a new type of steam mop. Reading all the details about this device really makes me want one! Seems like the perfect way to clean our tile floors, which are really difficult to keep/get clean.

What I really like about this device is that it is environmentally friendly too! All you need is regular tap water, and you can sanitize your floors/showers etc. It has a mop head pad that is machine washable; just toss in the laundry after you are done! Nothing else you have to buy. But of course this particular British model is only available on the European market, but I checked and found a bunch of similar US models, like the Bissell 1867.

A few years ago I was working on a campaign for ice cream makers, and sure enough, I ended up buying a similar ice cream machine after reading all the yummy stuff I could make!

A lot of these user manuals are for products that have not hit the market yet, I am currently involved in a project for a well know mobile phone manufacturer. Lets just say they are coming out with some really cool features in a near future... but I can't tell you what since I signed a confidentially agreement!

One of the fun sides of being a translator is definitely all the little inside information you get! And my absolute favourite thing about this profession is all the different little knowledge you pick up over the years! A lot of text is often very detailed, and I tend to get really into it, so you just learn all kinds of things, since projects vary immensely!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Poor S

S has been a little off since Friday night. She had a fever and some gook in her eye - same eye thing that she had a few weeks a go. Then her doctor said it was most likely allergies and gave her some antihistamine eye drops. I am not so sure it is allergies...

She has had a fever on and off, mostly at night, and they eye is really irritated and has a lot of discharge. It looks like the other eye is getting it too. She also have a stuffy nose and general cold symptoms. So if the drops don't seem to work I will call her pediatrician tomorrow.

We still managed to go to the birthday party yesterday. There were a lot of people there, and they had set up a jump castle and other fun outdoor toys outside.

S enjoying the jump castle, pretty empressive in 97F degree heat!

Very lavish spending! I am more of a home cooking and relaxed kind of person. catering and ponies and all that is a little too much. But you sure see more and more elaborate kids parties. In two weeks S's friend Z is having her 4-year old party. Hers is going to be at a pottery painting place. That should be cool! I have been wanting to take S to one of those places for a while.
S at the birthday party

I am almost done buying gifts for friends and family in Sweden. Maybe just a couple of more... I can't buy for everyone, so it is mainly for my cousin's kids, my mom, and my aunt and her family which we are staying with. And my dear old friends. And their kids. And... Every time I am out I think of someone else I want to get something for. So I think just today and that is it. Otherwise there won't be any money left for me to shop for in Sweden! FASA!
S and K at the birthday party

We scrapped the beach plans for today since S is sick, but S and I are going to the outlet mall and they all of us are going out for an early dinner on the beach.

Take care!

*** UPDATE***
Sdefinitly got bacterial pink eye, so they gave her some antibiotic eye drops to use for three days. Now I just have to wrestle her down three times a day for three days... She hates the drops, says they tickle too much! :-)

Saturday, June 16, 2007


For some reason I just haven't felt like updating my blog much at all. Today I am going to work for a few hours, got a new client in France, and the project is due Monday morning.

At 11:15 AM S and I are taking the dogs to a vaccination clinic. They offer all the vaccinations needed to a much reduced rate, it is usually $100 cheaper than the regular vet! It is through the county and a local vet clinic, but they only offer it every other Saturday, traveling around to a few different spots. I got to make sure the dogs are up to date on heir shots since they are being boarded when we go to Sweden.

At 2 PM all three of us are taking off to my friend S's daughter's birthday party. She is turning 3! S is really excited and doesn't seem to mind the presents are not for her. She is really looking forward to it I think.

Tomorrow it is Father's Day (or Daddy's Day as S calls it), and we are planning on spending the morning at the beach and then go straight to one of our favourite places, Rod & Reel Pier, for a late lunch. That place is on the very north tip on Anna Maria Island, and was built in the 40s. The pier is very rickety and old, and you sit outside surrounded by the water. The food is awesome too!

The Rod & Reel Pier, Anna Maria Island

How are you going to spend the weekend?

Thursday, June 14, 2007


I have just been so busy working the last few days, no energy left for blogging! I am finishing off a project for a client in Japan. She is so much fun, but her English is funnier! She writes English kind of backwards, like Japanese. Instead of saying: "It means about 20,000 words" it became: "It means 20,000 words about", and cute things like :"I am sorry to make you confuse". Gotta love it!

Gotta go! :-)

Monday, June 11, 2007

Back from the vet

We had to wait for an hour before they could see us, but that was expected since we were a last minute call.

The vet could tell I had popped the kneecap back in, so that was all fixed. But since he is getting old and has a little bit of arthritis, he is having some inflammation from the knee trauma. The vet gave him a steroid shot and some pain medication that is also an inflammatory to take at home.

As soon as we got home I placed Bob in front of the water bowl and he happily drank heaps of water. Then we gave both dogs their dinner, and Bob was more than happy to gobble down his kibbles. I think the steroids did wonders, and hopefully he will feel more like his old self tomorrow!

I am now going to hide his pain pill in a piece of cheese and give it to him. See ya later!

Mother in law

I love my Mother In Law. I do. She is odd and difficult, but she is family.

MIL is pretty cheap - she rarely spends any money on anything nice, she would rather pay less for something of lesser quality. And except for Christmas and S's birthday she rarely buys S anything, unless it is a nickel at a yard sale or similar.

We have received many weird items from her over the years. But one thing that really bugs me is that she ALWAYS buys S clothes in sizes at least 4 years larger than she needs! Today she called, and I thanked her for the shirts she had sent S. (I am really grateful, I am. They were cute too!). But I made sure to tell her I had a hard time explaining for S why she couldn't wear the nice shirts. MIL asked "Why?" Well, they are a SIZE 8 YEAR OLD! "Oh", she said. "I though they might shrink... Are you sure they won't fit?"

Sigh... The shirts even had a sticker on them that said: "Improved fabric for MINIMAL SHRINKING". In bold letters on a very colorful sticker on the shirts, not to be missed...

What is up with this? I know my mom (grandmother) used to do similar things, like buying me shoes a few sizes too big, saying I would "grow into them". And than make me wear the too big shoes. Which were too worn out to be worn when they finally actually fit me...

Since MIL ALWAYS buys us weird things as gifts, (and I always feel bad for not liking the gifts or being able to use them for that matter), I gently started to prep her in time for Christmas last year. It worked! We got gift certificates! S got a few odd toys from her as well, but that is fine, since she doesn't have to wear them...

I have an entire drawer full of odd clothing items from MIL to S in sizes that she will grow into. Eventually... Sigh...

Going to the vet

I am too worried about my beloved little Bob, so I talked to the vet's office, and they are going to squeeze him in after 4:30 PM. I am pretty sure it is a dislocated kneecap, since he have had several similar incidents over the year, not just any this serious. I hope they can manipulate it back and then all he needs is rest. Usually serious cases of patella problems like this require surgery (very expensive), so we will hope that is not the case.

I could not make him pee this afternoon, and I had to feed him water forcefully via a dropper since he won't drink. He is resting on a pillow on his dog bed inside the office closet. he doesn't seem to be in pain unless he walks, then the knee gives out. Sure hope there is an easy fix (but that is rarely the case, is it?!)

Keep your paws crossed he will be OK!

New week again

The time seems to have sped up and the days fly away!

We had a nice Saturday starting off with work at K's office. I got a lot of work done, and we also had a nice lunch/dinner. Later in the afternoon we saw "Surfs Up", which was actually really good! I had no expectations going into the movie theater, I thought it was going to be pretty lame. Turned out to be very well made!

Sunday was spent mostly at Busch Gardens. It was so hot tipping over towards 98F degrees (37C). It was also very humid. Hot! Luckily we brought our swimsuits and we rode a bunch of water rides to get wet and cool off. S just passed the 42 inch mark with shoes, so she could finally go on a few rides she wasn't tall enough for last time. She and I rode the roller coaster The Scorpion three times in a row! Lots of fun!

Something is up with Bob and his leg... K had gone in earlier on Saturday morning to the office and brought Bob with him, and S and I came in around 10 AM with Stan. Stan was very excited to see Bob and the both of them were tumbling around for a while when we arrived. Shortly after I noticed Bob was limping, not wanting to put any weight on one of his hind legs.

He has had problems with his kneecaps popping out of place since he was a little puppy, but it has always been easily fixed by holding his leg straight and letting him rest it for a few minutes. This time it seems he has a difficult time to bounce back. Maybe because he is getting old? He is going to be 7 this July, that is 49 in human years.

Anyway, he pretty much refuses to walk. I can touch his leg, stretch it and massage it, no problem. You can tell it is the knee cap since the problem only occur when he bends the leg when walking. He hasn't pooped since Saturday, and I had to sit with him for a very long time last night to finally get him to pee a little bit! He hasn't been that interested in food or water.

I know these things usually fixes itself, but if he his not better soon I will take him to the vet. Poor little Bob!

Today we are thinking about going to the pool. It is better to do it in the morning now, since we usually can count on thunder and lightning in the afternoon. Florida is pretty much like a tropical rain forest during the summer!

Friday, June 8, 2007


As some of you might now, I grew up with my grandmother as my mom, since my mom died from Melanoma when I was just 1 year old. So when I say mom I really mean grandmother...

Anyway, I talk to her pretty much every day, she still lives on Gotland. I am very glad she is still here; she had a stroke and a heart attack this past winter, and we were all sure she wasn't going to make it. But, she proved us all wrong and is as good as new!

Yesterday she did something, however, that made me question her sanity... She had the brilliant idea to try a self tanner for the first time in her 75 year old life. As most people know, you have to exfoliate pretty good before applying it, or you risk getting a splotchy and streaky result... And the cardinal rule is to carefully wash your hands afterwards, or you will get odd looking hands for sure! Well, she was not informed about this, so when she woke up the next day she was pretty horrified of how she looked. I understand, I would be too. Most normal people would probably jump in the shower and try to scrub it away, or maybe use a make up remover. Usually it is to no avail, since you will be stuck with the tan for a few days. You just have to grin and take it, right???

No, not my mom! She had the great idea to try white spirit, which is know in Sweden as LACKNAFTA. She rubbed it all over her body! Is she insane? And when that didn't work she got the even more insane idea to take a bath with chlorine in it! OH MY GOD! I yelled at her for a good 10 minutes... But she didn't seem to listen, the chlorine worked and she got the tanner off, that was all she cared about...

NUTS! But I still love her, crazy old lady...


New list, this one from Annika. Copy at will, but you can only use one word for each description:

2. RELATIONSHIP?: married
3. YOUR HAIR?: blah
4. WORK?: no
5. YOUR SISTER?: Carina
9. YOUR DREAM CAR?: dunno
10. THE ROOM YOU'RE IN?: office
11. YOUR SHOES?: none
12. YOUR FEARS?: invalid
16. MUFFIN?: dunno
18. WHERE YOU GREW UP? Gotland
22. YOUR PET?: dogs
23. YOUR COMPUTER?: dell
24. YOUR LIFE?: ok
25. YOUR MOOD?: good
26. MISSING?: Sweden
28. YOUR CAR?: Toyota
29. YOUR KITCHEN?: messy
30. YOUR SUMMER?: lazy
34. SCHOOL?: done
35. LOVE?: yes

Friday already?

I have no idea where this week went. Poof! And it is only 4 weeks until we leave for Sweden. What? Time flies!

Today S and I are running an errand for K, dropping off payroll to one of his clients. Then we will have a quick lunch and go to the pool. We haven't been to the pool for a long time, but it has been so overcast since last Friday. Hot but no sun. Today I opened the sliders in the living room and it was very sunny and bright! So the pool it is. I love that S is big enough to help me put on sunblock on my back. Another great benefit of having a child ;-)!

Tomorrow the plan is to go to K's office. I have a job I have to finish, and it is easier for me to do that there with K able to help me entertain S. We will have a late lunch at the office (Johnny Carino's Country Italian, haven't had that for a while...) We are planning to see the new cartoon in the late afternoon, "Surfs Up". It is a little confusing since you would think "Happy Feet" with all them penguins, but this one takes place in a tropical place with surfing. But I am sure they are riding on Happy Feet's penguin success...

On Sunday the plans are to visit Busch Gardens. If you ever come to Florida to check out the theme parks, don't miss Busch Gardens in Tampa! It is one of the nicer ones. It is the atmosphere I think. More relaxed. It is a giant amusement park with cool rides (mostly roller coasters), but it is also a zoo based on Africa. very beautiful animal exhibits. You can even take a Rhino Safari, which is an intimate tour on a large Land Rover in the midst of the African savanna.

It has been in the mid 90s here for a while now, so I am sure it will be a hot day on Sunday! We better bring our swim suits for the flume ride, so we can cool off towards the end a bit...

What are you guys up to this weekend?

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Infusion over for this time

I got to Dr K's office just before 8:30 AM this morning and had my physical. I had pre-medicated with extra steroids the night before and 100 mg Tylenol and 25 mg Benadryl an hour prior to arriving. this is to prevent allergic reactions, since they are pretty common.

This all takes place at my rheumatologist's office, they do infusions for Dr P, my gastorentereologist. I warned the staff I have very bad veins. First of all, over 20 years of being prodded with needles gives you a lot of scar tissue, so the skin in the bends of my arms is OK, but underneath the surface lurks tough scar tissue. I am always somewhat dehydrated due to diarrhea, so my veins are small. And they roll. So, not a great set up for anyone wanting to open up a vein in one of my arms... They managed to blow two veins before success was achieved, and this is not something you want to see or experience. The vein literally blows up like a little balloon under the skin and bursts... Lots of bruising! They even considered sending me to the hospital for the infusion, but thankfully they persisted, since that probably would have opened up a can of worms in regards to insurance coverage.

Then to my dismay did I realize they don't use a regular IV set up. They just put the needle in your arm and that is it! You are not allowed to move your arm at all, not an inch! For 2.5 hours... I was cramping up a lot when I was finally done... They might want to consider investing in some real IV equipment, so the patients can move their arms! this meant I could not work on the laptop as I was hoping. Luckily I had brought a DVD I hadn't watched yet, so I was able to do that with just one arm.

So far no reaction (except being veeery sleepy from the Benadryl; antihistamines tend to knock most people out). There was a woman about my age in the chair next to me, receiving the same medication for the same thing. She was not a very positive person. I asked how long she had been sick, and she replied for very long, going on three years! I am thinking to myself that three is nothing, I am going on my third decade! I didn't say anything, but I tried to talk positive to her, she didn't seem to have a very positive outlook on life. I tried to tell her that being positive is really key to live a better life when you are dealing with a disease like this. She just kind of looked at me with doubting eyes. But seriously, you really have to stay positive!

So now I am waiting for my next infusion in two weeks. Hopefully it will work this time around!

Here I am waiting for them to inject the medicine. As you can tell I am very puffy and horrible looking due to all the steroids. They call it "moon face" since the face gets all round and big. Not a pretty sight!

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

What? Great... :-(

Went to my dear old Dr B today to figure out what to do with all this pain... Turns out I am suffering from steroid withdrawal... The very drug I hate, I now have to take more of. Again. When you take steroids for even a short period of time, the body's natural cortisol production can pretty much shut down, and there is no way to kick start the adrenal glands to start producing again, it has to happen slooowly. In my case over several months of tapering off the dose of the medication.

The list of withdrawal symptoms pretty much was all the things I am experiencing, except shock, coma and death... That is something I would like to avoid, thank you very much! Everyone is different, so there is no surefire way of tapering, and I guess we went a little too fast. Oh, and diarrhea is a symptom, so maybe it is not the UC, maybe it is just drug related?!

Tomorrow, Remicade time. i sure hope I won't have a reaction to it. I will let you know how it goes!

Today it is Nationaldagen, or Sweden's National Day. This is the equivalent to the US 4th of July. It is also Svenska Flaggans Dag, the Day of the Swedish Flag.

Time to sing Sweden's National Anthem, "Du gamla, Du fria":

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Oj här går det undan!

Med risk för att tangentbordet ska ryka (har skrivet så det går undan som bara den idag) tittar jag in här lite snabbt.

Hade 5 ganska så tunga jobb som låg och väntade i morse. Det var lite stressigt eftersom jag sagt ja till alla och kommer ha ont om tid den här veckan. På torsdag missar jag i princip en hel jobbardag eftersom jag ska på behandling via dropp och kommer att bli sittandes där en halv dag, och sedan är det besök hos huddoktorn på eftermiddagen.

Men jag VET att jag jobbar som bara den om jag har lite så där lagom med stress och press över mig, och vips så hade jag gjort klart, skickat iväg och fakturerat 4 av 5 jobb! Det femte har jag fått förlängd deadline, så jag har tills på måndag att göra klart. Kommer nog att ta med S och hundisarna till K's kontor, eftersom han ska jobba på lördag, och jobab där. Det brukar vara mysigt! Det kommer att bli eett segt projekt dessvärre, det är vanligtvis fallet om det är något som jag tycker är tråkigt, detta är en bruksanvisning för "world's first upright wrinkle removing machine". Registrerar inte direkt jättehögt på intresseskalan, men många fina tusenlappar blir det till att handla på ICA i Sverige med, så...

Nu en liten promenad med vovvsarna, de står här och nyser, fnyser och gnäller... fast jag lyckades trycka in en 45 minuter lång promenad tidigt i morse innan det blev för varmt, så det går nog ingen supernöd på dem... :-)

Monday, June 4, 2007

Pain and more pain

I had to make an appointment to see my dear old Dr B on Wednesday. I don't know if it is because I have tapered down to a low dose on the steroids, and I am not taking anything else (normally I would be on an immune suppressant as well), but I have been having all kinds of assorted pain pop up. My face still hurts, my old hip pain is back, my ribs are really tender, and what really worries me is a new pain over both areas where the kidneys are. My teeth even hurt! That, I know, is a side effect of the steroids...

It just seems my whole body is flaring up a little. It has been very hard to sleep, with all the pain and the diarrhea going on. I sure hope the Remicade will do some good, not that I have very high hopes... I think it might be time to ask for some pain killers again, I have held off for about 7 months asking for them. Pain pills scare me a little, since you hear so many scary stories of people getting hooked, but I think that would be far fetched.

I have had to take various pain pills over the years, and I have never had any problems with only taking when needed and then stop. I have however, it seems, a sensitivity to morphine when given as an injection in the hospital. It has given me an anxiety attack twice (and I have only had three attacks in my life).

But if I am going to be traveling for 24 hours I would like to have a back up plan if the pain gets really bad. I rather be all happy and over loving (that is me on "happy pill") than grumpy, cranky and ready t tear someones head off! Plus, a good nights sleep would be appreciated...


Jag satt och planerade lite på allt vi ska göra hemma på Gotland i juli, vi vill ju gärna hinna med så mycket som möjligt, vila kan vi ju göra när vi kommer hem!

Dessutom är det ju bra att kolla med den uppsjö av släktingar och vänner som jag vill träffa när det passar dem bäst, alla är ju inte på semester (även om det nog kan verka så i Sverige i juli!) Så vad som har växt fram är ett litet löst schema med saker som ska göras och personer som ska besökas! Konstigt, för normalt när jag är i Sverige så bara är jag, inget speciellt planerat, som hemma ungefär. Det är nog för att det brukade vara hemma... men mindre så numera...

Men denna gång blir det mer som en semester. Maken och dotter har aldrig varit i Sverige, och med tanke på att vi har varit tillsammans i 10 år så är det ju på tiden att K får se vart jag kommer ifrån... Det är ganska kul att planera alla möjliga "turistiga saker" att göra! En del grejer har jag inte gjort sedan jag var liten, och en del saker har det aldrig blivit av att jag gjort/besökt, som Stora Karlsö, t.ex.! Ska bli intressant...

Sista gången jag var i Sverige var sommaren 1998, vi gifte oss inte förens senare under december, så de flesta har inte ens sett mig som gift!

Året efter hade jag precis tagit examen och börjat jobba, så det var svårt att ta ledigt. Nästa sommar var jag i fullt sjå med att starta eget, så då blev det inget heller… Och 2001, ja då hade vi så mycket svenskt besök och vi jobbade mycket båda två… Och 2002 höll vi på och flyttade, och 2003 hade jag precis fått barn. 2004 hade vi just pungat ut med en hel del pengar när vi köpte huset, så då var det skralt… 2005, ja då försökte vi, men det var tufft för K att ta ledigt över huvud taget… 2006 jobbade jag på två långa projekt över sommaren, så då fick vi ju nöja oss med svenskt besök här i stället!

Och så har jag ju varit lite för sjuk sedan S föddes 2003 för att egentligen kunna ge mig iväg… Vi får väl hoppas på det bästa den här gången! Suck ja! Nu kan ju maken i alla fall inte skylla så mycket på att han måste jobba, eftersom han installerade en ny server i helgen och nu kan använda den bärbara datorn i Sverige som om han vore på sitt kontor på jobbet…

Eftersom det har gått 9 år sedan förra Sverige-besöket så känns det som om jag åker dit i form av turist. En besökare. Hu…

Sunday, June 3, 2007


Remind me again why I moved away from Sweden?

Fun & Games

If you ever need to let out some steam or just have fun with the kids, i can recommend the AirZooka! We got this many years ago, but it never stops being fun... It is a toy using simple mechanics you use to shoot off harmless puffs of air.

Airzooka - Air Bazooka

The Airzooka, air bazooka, is destined to become a classic! Airzooka has a unique hand-held system that shoots a harmless "ball of air" towards objects and people. Watch folks howl with amazement as the Airzooka, seemingly from nowhere, messes up someone's hair, ruffles shirts or just blows them away from up to 40 feet!

Drive your dog or cat CRAZY!!! Aim at squirrels with your Airzooka. Best of all, the AirZooka uses no batteries, so you'll never run out of ammo. An air bazooka, invented by Brian Walker, is a tube with a flexible plastic cover on one end, named for its appearance after the bazooka. By pulling back the cover, the person using the air bazooka draws air into the tube. When let go, pneumatic pressure snaps the cover forward, launching a massive amount of air at the target that the tube is being pointed at.
Bob the dog hates it, Stan doesn't seem to mind too much. The daughter LOVES it. great exercise for mom chasing after her!

Home movie

Since I will have a few hours on my hands stuck in a chair with a needle in my arm on Thursday, I was trying to come up with some suitable project I can work on on the laptop. I don't think I want to actually work, since I would be too frustrated if I can't get on the Internet.

But I want to make a nice movie about where we live and our home. I don't have a video camera, since our Sony Mavica store everything on CD and you can actually make up to a 30 minute movie on it. I was thinking about making several smaller segments and then put it all together using Microsoft Movie Maker, which I have on both my regular compute rand the laptop. I just don't know how to use it yet, so I figured Thursday would be a good time to play around with it and figure it out.

While I was looking through a few old movie clips I came across a little 10 minute movie I made when we had just moved into our larger apartment 5 years ago, in July of 2002. This was pre-daughter, and just look how neat and uncluttered everything was! I thought some of you might get a kick out of seeing how we used to live! I will try to post the new movie as well when I get around to making it.

Just click here to watch the clip!

Butterfly update #4

Today the weather is nice again - just a little windy - so we decided to release the butterflies. After all, they only live for 2 weeks, so we don't want them to be stuck in a little cage for any long part of that time!

We lucked out and was able to witness the last butterfly emerge from its chrysalis - pretty amazing!

Here they are, getting ready to fly off in the free:

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Tropical Storm Barry

This is really odd - Tropical Storm Barry is expecting to make landfall in the Tampa Bay area between noon and 3 PM, and you would have to search really hard to find someone who is not happy about this fact!!!

A tropical storm is usually cause for great concern, since you can expect torrential rains, flooding, wind damage and tornadoes. But in this case the benefits (heavy rain BADLY needed in draught ravage Florida) outweighs the risks.

It has pretty much rained non-stop since 1 PM yesterday. Right now we are in between feeder bands. A feeder band is one of the bands reaching out from a storm, and when it moves in its clock-wise motion these feeder bands reach out light tentacles on an octopus. Meaning that in even the most intense storm you can get short periods of calm and no rain. (This is usually when you take your dog out for a walk).

I am not expecting any problems from this storm, just rain, rain and more rain! Yay!

Friday, June 1, 2007

And the fun is over...

I have very slowly decreased the dose of Prednisone every 4 weeks. As soon as I came down to 20 mg I started to notice not so pleasant symptoms coming back. Just a little bit at a time. Then last weekend I felt as if I lived in the bathroom with very bad diarrhea. This past week I have not gotten much sleep, just constantly having to go to the bathroom. I am back to my old exhausted self again. Yesterday I had some pretty bad bleeding too.

Yesterday I did manage to go for a 45 minute walk, so it is not quite back to square one. Yet.

I guess my hope is now the Remicade infusions which will start on Thursday next week, unless they re-schedule again...

This is so frustrating. I hate ulcerative colitis.


Butterfly update #3

We named this one Bengt.

We have butterflies! I just happened to glance over there, and three had hatched! S and I got into a mad scramble to fix them some food, since I don't know how long they have been out. The instructions said to make sugar water and sprinkle on flowers, but we don't have any flowers and it is raining outside, so the alternative was to make little balls of facial tissue and soak them in the sugar water. You can also give them fresh cut slices of oranges to drink from, which we did.

Two more are still to hatch, pretty exciting!

In case you wonder, that red stuff is not blood, just secretions from the butterflies when they burst out of the chrysalis.

We have RAIN!

It is not a huge amount, no torrential downpour, but it was enough to get us really wet when we walked the dog, and Bob even did his happy rain dance, which he only does when he gets really wet... It is not enough by a long shot, but at least there is hope! More please!

Oh, and we changed our domestic flight in Sweden, so we are now leaving at 12:20 PM instead of 10:00 AM... Hopefully the plane will be at least an hour late from Philly as predicted, otherwise I will feel bad about having paid extra to change the tickets ;-)!